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Opened 4 months ago

#1693 new defect

Record excess deaths in UK's heatwave summer

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Record excess deaths in UK's heatwave summer

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As the UK endured record high temperatures of 40C this summer, there were around 3,000 more deaths in the over-65s than usual in England and Wales - the highest figure since 2004.

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Many happened during the hottest days towards the end of July and in early August.

The data comes from a report by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).

Experts say it shows just how dangerous hot weather can be.

"These estimates show clearly that high temperatures can lead to premature death for those who are vulnerable," said Isabel Oliver, chief scientific officer at the UKHSA.

"A warming climate means we must adapt to living safely with hotter summers in the future."

There were five heat-periods between June and August 2022 - defined as days when the average temperature is greater than 20°C in central England.

During those periods, there were 3,271 excess deaths - 6.2% above the five-year average - out of a total of 56,303 deaths in England and Wales.

And among those aged 65 years and over, there were 2,803 excess deaths - the highest number since 2004, when England introduced a plan to prepare for heatwaves.

The UK recorded temperatures of over 40C (104F) for the first time between 17 and 20 July, during one of the hottest summers on record.

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